Did you know that around 61 million US adults live with a disability today?
If you need to make a benefits claim or need legal advice surrounding any aspect of your disability, a disability lawyer can help. They’re specially trained to handle all aspects of disability law and get you the justice and compensation you’re entitled to.
But do you have to enter into a retainer agreement when hiring a disability lawyer? This guide explains all about retainer fees and how they relate to disability claims.
Read on for everything you need to know.
What is a Retainer Agreement?
Retainer fees are advanced payments made to a lawyer in return for legal representation. This payment demonstrates that the client is able to pay for the service and pays for some of the matters related to their case.
Generally, a retainer agreement won’t cover the entire cost of the case. Instead, further hourly rates are charged for additional services.
If the final legal bill is less than the retainer fees, the attorney will refund the difference to the client once the matter is closed.
Hiring a Disability Lawyer
Disability lawyers and representatives are not allowed to charge retainer fees for their services. However, there are a few other things you should know about disability lawyer fees.
Disability lawyers receive one-fourth of any disability benefits back-payments at the conclusion of the case. This fee is currently capped at $6,000.
Beyond the maximum fee, disability lawyers can charge for expenses such as travel, expert testimony, copies, correspondence, and other services. The terms of these incidental fees are set out in the fee agreement signed by the disability applicant or their representative.
Disability lawyers and representatives work on a contingency basis. This means that their maximum fee is contingent on their client’s case outcome. In the case of the disability claim denial, there will be no percentage fee to pay.
Again, the fee agreement will state whether incidental payments are charged on a contingency basis or not.
Disability Lawyer Fees
Clients and their representatives should take the time to read over any proposed fee agreement carefully before signing. Fee agreements are legally binding contracts. Disability lawyers can demand payment for anything agreed upon in the fee agreement in the specified time frame.
If you need help with a disability claim, Benefitsclaim.com can help. They offer a range of helpful resources and advice for Americans who want to apply for disability benefits.
Justice Without a Retainer Agreement
Because you’ve no obligation to enter into a retainer agreement, there’s no reason not to pursue the services of a disability lawyer or representative.
The key takeaway is to find representation that’s upfront on pricing and clear on the terms of their fee agreement. While they can’t charge retainer fees, legal expenses and incidental charges can be costly. Always read legal documents thoroughly before you sign them.
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